Athletics: Guy on track to team up with star Lolo

LASSWADE athlete Guy Learmonth admits friendship will have to be put to one side if he is to book his place alongside World indoor champion Lolo Jones at next month's Super8 athletics event.

With only one spot available in the Glasgow team for his favoured 800 metres, Learmonth is locked in a battle with pal Stuart Ross to be on track at the Scotstoun Stadium on Wednesday, 7 July.

American Jones will be part of a star-studded collection of athletes taking to the track with Olympic gold medallist Allen Johnson and GB's world championship 800m bronze medallist Jenny Meadows also in attendance. But, while desperate to rub shoulders with Jones and Co next month, the 18-year-old knows he has got to focus on proving he is the best man in Scotland first.

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"To make the Super8 squad would be absolutely brilliant and would definitely be the highlight of my short career so far," said Learmonth.

"Lolo Jones is running for Glasgow and that is amazing. You can never stop learning and she would be great to watch her up close and pick her brain about a few things. She is a great athlete and she would definitely boost the Glasgow squad and bring more success their way.

"It is quite weird going up against Stuart Ross for the 800m spot because we are best of pals off the track.

"But on the track we are both very competitive. It's not an ideal situation but this is how things happen and we will both be doing our best to make the squad."

Learmonth has endured a topsy-turvy start to his 2010 campaign, lowering his 800m personal best by over two seconds but also spending the last month laid up with a viral infection. He is planning a double assault on the podium this year at both the World Junior Championships in Canada and the October's Commonwealth Games in India.

And while revealing he is behind schedule in those dual aims Learmonth, who is a pupil at Longridge Towers independent school in Berwick, is adamant he is a whisker away from being back to his best.

"Even though I have been running well, I am still behind where I want to be but I know that I am just one race away from being back to my best. I have been training well and have been going fast in practice so I want to do it out on the track now.

"I am working towards two major goals this year and these are the World Junior Champs and the Commonwealth Games. I think both of the qualifying standards are in my reach. I was in great form before and then the setback I had with infection has made me more determined.

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"I think I will be running 1.48 soon so, hopefully, I can push on from there and make up for lost time. I am looking to set the standard for my age group."

• Super8 is based on a City v City format, the event was piloted in Cardiff in 2009 and will make a long-anticipated return in Glasgow on Wednesday, 7 July. Tickets are available by visiting or calling the hotline 08000 55 60 56.